They come in all shapes and sizes and offer just about anything inside. RVs are often a huge investment for campers, so when you go shopping, you want to make sure you buy the right one for you. One of the first things to keep in mind isn't actually the RV.
"Make sure you have the correct tow vehicle. Of course that is important that you can tow the actual RV," said Gary Perala, sales manager at Hilltop RV Superstore in Ishpeming.
There are RVs for any vehicle size, so never think your car is too small to tow one, but the size of the RV is important for another reason, too: the number of passengers.
"What are your sleeping needs? How many? That is important," Perala added.
Then consider the luxury aspect. RVs can be very spacious and can comfortably fit your average-sized family. The bigger and more luxurious RVs also offer a full kitchen living area, not to mention bigger and better electronics, but that all comes at a price. Prices vary greatly depending on big or small, new or used. Most range $15,000 to $75,000. After you purchase one, you also need to maintain it.
"An RV is more like home maintenance. You have all the things you have in a home. It's a self-contained unit that has a plumbing system, an electrical system. It has a roof. It has windows. It has a screen door," said Pat Scanlon, sales consultant at Hilltop RV Superstore.
When you take your RV out for its first trip or after letting it sit idle for the winter season, make sure you check the tires, that the chains and towing equipment aren't rusted, and that there are no gas leaks. Then focus on emergency items.
"An RV, mandatory by law, has a CO (carbon monoxide) detector, it has a smoke and fire alarm, and it also has an LP gas detector," Scanlon added.
After that, you and your RV should be ready to go. If you're new to owning an RV, Hilltop requires that you take a training course at the store on how to properly care and maintain your new RV.